San Antonio, Texas (April 14, 2023) - Today, children at River Trails Apartments in San Antonio, Texas are celebrating as the community debuts a kid-designed, community-built playground. The months-long collaboration between Related Affordable Foundation and KABOOM! culminated this week as more than 100 volunteers built the new playspace that will spark joy and foster a sense of belonging for kids in the River Trails community. The San Antonio Football Club donated autographed equipment for the children and members of the team joined the celebration of the new playspace.
The new playground was a collaborative effort by community members, including kids, who presented creative ideas for their dream playground during a design day in February. This new playspace will provide families with a high-quality, safe place to play that is close to where they live and learn and reflects Related’s dedication to building and supporting thriving communities.
“Playgrounds are an iconic part of childhood. They’re not only where kids collect some of their best memories, but also where crucial skills are developed that nurture their physical, mental, and emotional well-being,” said Lysa Ratliff, CEO of KABOOM!. “KABOOM! is thrilled to work with our partners to bring to life the new playspace at River Trails and ensure that kids in San Antonio have a place designed just for them, where they can play, learn, and unlock their greatest potential.”
Playing is the essence of childhood and is a critical developmental need that provides countless physical, social, and mental health benefits. However, far too many children, especially in communities of color, do not have a place to play near where they live or learn. KABOOM! is working to end playspace inequity, ensuring that kids have access to quality places to play, something that should be part of every child’s life. The new playground at River Trails, designed with the neighborhood’s unique needs and aspirations in mind, brings San Antonio, Texas one step closer toward ending playspace inequity and ensuring that every kid has the opportunity to experience the joys and benefits of play.
“The Related Affordable Foundation is committed to enriching the lives of affordable housing residents,” said Leleah James, Executive Director of Related Affordable Foundation. “We are proud to partner with KABOOM! to provide the community with an incredible playspace that will provide families with a place to get active, build bonds, and gather within the neighborhood.”
District 3, Councilwoman Phyllis Viagran and staffers from her office helped to build the new playspace for the residents at River Trails Apartments. As a proud native of San Antonio, before running for City Council, Councilwoman Viagran began her public servant career as an elementary teacher.
“After years as an early childhood educator, I know firsthand the importance of playgrounds in the development of our children’s decision-making skills and socialization,” said Councilwoman Viagran. “I am honored to support the work being done in this community to ensure our children have access to amazing places to play, stay safe, and grow to be the future leaders of this state.”
The San Antonio Football Club played an integral role in building the new playspace equipped with soccer balls and more autographed by the team.
“We are delighted to have the opportunity to contribute to the creation of this playground for young children and their families at River Trails. The inclusion of the community’s residents, and especially its kids, in the actual design process reinforces the objective of the partners in this project to build a neighborhood safe space for recreation that meets the needs of its users. It will be a wonderful place for kids to experience playing ‘the beautiful game’ where they live and on their own terms,” said Tim Holt, San Antonio FC Managing Director.
The Related Affordable Foundation has provided support for the new playground through its partnership with KABOOM!, furthering its commitment to ending playspace inequity.
About Related Affordable Foundation
The Related Affordable Foundation (RAF) is a charitable, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization committed to enriching the lives of affordable housing residents and breaking the generational cycle of poverty. Established in 2016, the Related Affordable Foundation sponsors impactful programs and activities in the areas of education, food security, health & wellness, and workforce development. For more information on the Related Affordable Foundation, please contact [email protected].
KABOOM! is the national nonprofit committed to ending playspace inequity – the reality that quality places to play are not available to every child, especially in communities of color. Since 1996, KABOOM! has partnered with kids and communities to create or transform 17,000+ playspaces and ensure that nearly 12 million kids have equitable access to the critical benefits and opportunities that playspaces offer. In 2022, KABOOM! launched the 25 in 5 Initiative to End Playspace Inequity to accelerate its mission in 25 high-priority locations over five years. Learn more at kaboom.org or join the conversation on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Iyana Moore [email protected]
Related Affordable Foundation:
Kayla Parker[email protected]
Office of Councilwoman Phyllis Viagran: Addinelly Moreno Soto:
Addinelly Moreno Soto[email protected]